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Old 06-05-2009, 07:16 AM   #21
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If you can- go for it.

Just be sure to consider these things:

You state you will have a high percent of your current income. Can you live on the new income? Have you tried recently to live on that amount for maybe 6 months to "test the waters"?

Is the pension adjusted for inflation? If not, you will need additional savings.

Have you considered your tax liability as part of your expenses?

Do you have savings to cover an extra car down the road, or housing repairs?

Can you handle increases in your medical premiums? And will your coverage be differnt than it is now?

Have you planned for supplemental medical coverage once medicare kicks in?

Have you planned that social security might change before we can collect?

Oh, I sound like a pessimist perhaps. But better to be sure before taking the dip.

We have almost 2 years to go out at 55- can't wait, but I am sure we will have mixed feelings too!
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Old 06-05-2009, 12:26 PM   #22
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
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Originally Posted by GraySpirit View Post
You know one day while driving home from work, I drove through a fast food place for an ice cream soda. Well, the ice cream must have been bad because by the time I got home, the ice cream was insisting on being released in any way possible.
I sat on the old throne for a long time. And everytime I thought I was done, I had to go back and do a little more meditation. Finally, when I thought there was no more to give, I stood up to take a shower and promptly passed out.
I regained conciousness but was too weak to stand, so I lay there butt naked thinking that this was it, the big one. And the world was going to find me naked and dead in the bathroom. In that moment, I realized that all that hard work, career, house, etc. didn't mean squat to me. And I thought my epitaph was going to read ... died naked, on the toilet.
Next day, I went to the doc and he said it was probably just food poisoning and that I had fainted from a loss of fluids. The day after I went back to work, went in to see my boss and announced my retirement.
One month into retirement ... and I swear ... not a single regret. Hopefully, when I do go, my epitaph will read ... completed his bucket list and then some ...


Bravo! Bravo!

I would like to nominate this tale as the FIRE Story of the Year.
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Old 06-11-2009, 06:23 AM   #23
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Bravo! Bravo!

I would like to nominate this tale as the FIRE Story of the Year.

I second it!
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Old 06-11-2009, 06:28 AM   #24
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Hi, I'm 57 yr old gov't worker eligible to retire after 33 yrs. on the job. My wife is a teacher with 4 more years to eligibility. I am at the point of diminishing returns in my retirement plan. My pension will now fund 85% of my working pay so if I continue to work it is mostly for diminishing returns. I will pay $360 per mo. in retirement for health insurance, home is paid for, small farm paid for, $250K in 457 plan. One son graduating from college another just starting, but has a scholarship that will pay most of the costs. Live in the midwest in a small town farming comunity. It appears to me that I have most of the things in place as I have planned for years, but I seem to be having a hard time signing my papers. I'm not sure what the reason is. Many of my retired friends tell me I will love it. I am in good health and have lots of hobbies - but I remember as a child, seeing my father flat broke and in the best of times we didn't have much. I vowed to myself that when I grew up I would never be in that situation. I went to college and got my present gov't. job 2 weeks after graduation. My wife tells me that I should be excited and to "go for it". I find myself thinking maybe I should work a little longer, but I can't think of a good reason why. Is retirement really as wonderful as my friends tell me?
I don't understand of government pensions, but it seems that you'll have a steady lifetime income, you live in a low cost area, have many hobbies, got a DW that supports the decision, by golly, go for it! I'm itching to do the same and all I have are the hobbies.
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Old 06-11-2009, 06:46 AM   #25
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Bravo! Bravo!

I would like to nominate this tale as the FIRE Story of the Year.



I second it!
I agree! What a great story!

I had planned an early retirement for years and was constantly running the calculators, etc. But I think I might have been too nervous to make the leap if it weren't for the unfortunate deaths of two friends of mine, both in their 50s. Both were vibrant, healthy women who died suddenly. I think at some level I realized that could be me, and I would be fighting mad if I had planned, saved, etc. for all these years just to find myself still working when my time came.
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Old 06-14-2009, 12:15 PM   #26
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I think the greatest thing that bothered me prior to retirement was, did I have enough of a retirement income. Too much of my thinking was focused on the income side of the equation which resulted in thinking ... hmmm one more year ... wait for another pay raise to boost the pension ... put a little more in my 403 ... etc. etc. etc.

After my incident, I realized that at that rate I would never retire, because I was always setting the bar higher for myself. Now I focus on the expense side of the equation - trying to figure out how to actually improve my standard of living after retirement and cutting costs.

Of course moving overseas isn't for everyone, but in another month I'll be overseas and I expect to have more discretionary income in retirement than I ever had in my nice management job - and that includes paying off the balance of some remaining debt I hold. And with just a handful of tradeoffs, I pretty much expect to have a higher standard of living as well.

My only suggestion is to really look at both sides of the equation - managing your wealth and managing your cost of living.
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Old 06-14-2009, 06:14 PM   #27
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I remember as a child, seeing my father flat broke and in the best of times we didn't have much. I vowed to myself that when I grew up I would never be in that situation. I went to college and got my present gov't. job 2 weeks after graduation. My wife tells me that I should be excited and to "go for it". I find myself thinking maybe I should work a little longer, but I can't think of a good reason why. Is retirement really as wonderful as my friends tell me?
You strike me as a cautious type so rather than leaping into to retirement as many urge, why not dip your toe. I would ask to take a long leave of absence. At least 6 months and preferably a 1 year. (If all else fails you can almost certainly qualify for Family Medical Leave of absence to take care of you or your wife's parents.) At the end of the time if you don't feel financially or emotionally ready to retire than go back to work. That is what I did and when my year was up, went back to the office and resigned.
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